Research Surveys walked off with 3 awards at the 2004 SAMRA Convention held recently in Muldersdrift. This was out of 4 papers that were presented by RS researchers.
For the third consecutive year, Neil Higgs, Director of the Strategic Business Development Unit of Research Surveys, won the best paper at the South African Market Research Convention. This brings to seven the total of times that Neil has won this award. Neil's paper On or Off Track compared different approaches to tracking studies and looked at optimal ways of presenting data and detecting change.
Neil's paper explored the notion that tracking studies are often felt to be the boring part of research. But, says Neil : "As trackers evolve from wave tracking to continuous tracking, the wealth and richness of the information gained enable the data analysis and interpretation opportunities to multiply into truly fascinating arenas." Neil's main emphasis was on how to present the data most usefully, and how to detect when change occurs. In so doing, he borrowed from standard significance testing, from quality control techniques, from financial charting and technical analysis approaches. And he also developed some new techniques for RS to take forward with their clients.
Camilla Brassey, a research executive at RS, won runner up and best first-time speaker for her paper on An understanding of the Influence of 'flow' on Subjective Well-Being. Her paper looked at engaging consumers at a more emotional level as a means of increasing brand appeal and breaking through advertising clutter.
Camilla's paper explored the concept of flow - a state of engagement in interesting activities, which is achieved when there is a balance between challenge and skill, providing information that is new, yet not overwhelming. Flow was identified as a motivational force that has a powerful impact and should be used more consciously and more often, both in advertising and within the work environment.
Toni Joubert and Kim Larsen's Acting on Attitude examined and compared various statistical techniques used to understand consumer attitudes driving interest in and loyalty to brands. By taking one case study and throwing a variety of analysis techniques at it, they produced some widely differing solutions and some that almost mirrored each other. They concluded that, since different techniques offer varying solutions, analysts and clients alike should beware of using one analytical technique as the 'magic formula' to solve a research problem.
Amit Makan's paper entitled To text Next - Is this Best ? looked at the use of mobile phone technology as a research tool. The results of the research that Amit undertook illustrated that adopting an SMS research methodology is appropriate for a certain sub-segment of the South African mobile user, and for very specific types of survey research.